By now, most users are fully aware that support for Windows XP is coming to an end on April 9. Microsoft currently has plans to continue releasing anti-malware updates until then but will not release general bug fixes, so any potential vulnerabilities will not be taken care of.
Let’s look at how many Window XP users are out there before we check out the Windows XP Support survey results. According to Netmarketshare.com, Windows XP still has a market share of nearly 30%.
There have been some interesting studies among IT administrators and professionals in companies as to how to handle the lack of support for Windows XP. One study revealed that 36% of company users would leave Windows XP as a consequence, but we haven’t really seen that many interesting studies among actual Windows XP users using XP in their homes who face the same question. What to do when Windows XP support ends?
We set up a simple survey among Windows XP users randomly picked among our users in USA, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Denmark and a few other locations which reasonably could be seen as representative for Windows XP users globally. We received a staggering 1,740 replies. Thank you for that. Out of the users that responded, 23% were women and 77% were men. We kept the survey short with only three simple questions.
The first question relates to what users plan to do after the April 9 deadline.
It’s interesting that a whopping 65% will continue to use Windows XP. It is thereby justifiable to conclude that users do not really care that much. Also notice that 18% haven’t yet decided what to do. They will most likely keep using the PC for some time and make a decision later. It is also interesting to see that more than double will try to upgrade their PC’s to Windows 7 rather than Windows 8/8.1, which reflects the problems Windows is currently facing with Windows 8. If data is cross-tabbed for gender, we can see that 68% of men plan to keep their XP computer, while only 54% of women plan to do the same. And while 30% of women are still undecided, only 15% of men are.
There have been speculations as to whether users actually are aware that support is ending, and if so to what extent are they are concerned. The second question relates to what users fear most about keeping Windows XP without having ongoing support.
The third and final question relates to the extent of worry. There are some concerns, mostly related to the missing Windows Updates. Yet 28% also express worry regarding malware and viruses. Again we see some gender differences — 22% of men “do not care” while 14% of women “do not care”.
What can we conclude here? Arguably there will be a large number of Windows XP computers in use after April 9 — probably a much larger number than Microsoft anticipated. We don’t think it’s fair to blame them though. They have been supporting an OS for 13 years, and at some point you have got to put it to sleep. The latest news here is that Microsoft will start sending popup notifications to encourage Windows XP users to upgrade.
Feel free to add your comments below to the XP support survey, and tell us what you think of the situation after April 9.